- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 9 hours and 33 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Recorded Books
- Audible.com Release Date: August 12, 2014
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00LTZSC9Q
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Sunshine on Scotland Street: A 44 Scotland Street Novel, Book 8 Audiobook – Unabridged
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Top customer reviews
I cannot think of another author writing today who conveys such warmth with such seeming simplicity. (Perhaps a few authors of books for young children?) I hoard the books from another of Alexander McCall Smith's series--The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series--for when I need to be cheered up.
In this eighth book of the 44 Scotland Street series, the reader becomes quickly embroiled in the life and times of those honest, humble people of Edinburgh. Well, some of the characters are a bit over-proud of themselves but that helps create balance in the plot of this on-going tale of the inhabitants of 44 Scotland Street. This time, the marriage of Angus and Domineca is eminent and the whole ceremony is almost lost, due to Cyril's absentmindedness, until Matthew, his best man, cleverly and hilariously saves the day.
After the ceremony, the happy couple are poised to jet off for their Jamaican honeymoon. But what to do with Cyril, Angus's dog? An overjoyed Bertie is asked to mind Cyril, while the happy couple is away for three weeks, much to the consternation and distaste of his mother, the domineering Irene. Subsequently, Cyril is shunted from pillar to post, since Bertie's ability to take care of the dog at 44 Scotland Street is soon derailed by Irene, during one of her finer moments of being a self-absorbed, thoroughly modern mother.
We also revisit Matthew and Elspeth who are still adjusting to parenthood with their new triplets. The couple unwittingly get themselves into a film that is meant to depict the everyday life of Edinburgers. The filming goes awry but allows Matthew to reevaluate and justify his life. Once again, Big Lou waxes eloquent. Bruce who, in a daring doppelganger scheme, wins a very large lottery but, of course, his conscience is compromised when he has to share the take......which is definitely not his style.....however he's met his match with his neighboring twin.
There's little true mystery in this novel but there are several, worrying unusual conflicts that upset the everyday lives in and around 44 Scotland Street. As usual, Alexander McCall Smith waxes eloquent with this mildly, philosophical sleuthing, not to mention his skilled yet gentle sarcasm. His superb language skills and knowledge of many philosophical, ethical, social, political, historical and literary subjects is astounding. He is a gifted writer whose seemingly light weight novels are quite deeply gratifying, as they delve into the workings of the morally, or unmorally, informed players of his novels.
I've read almost 40 of his stories and I'm an Alexander McCall Smith junkie! I love his unusually quirky, philosophical and mildly sarcastic meanderings through wide variety of settings and characterizations. I can't wait for a new installment, in any of his novel series, to be published.
For the first time since I began reading McCall Smith's books, I am forced to say that I was disappointed. Though this book does have its bits of charm and wisdom, I found it to be a bit tedious to get through. That has never been the case before! I almost always put down the author's books with a yearning for more, but this time it was almost a relief to finally close the book. There is something intangible that is lacking in the story. In some ways, it seems forced, as if the author had a deadline to publish a book in the series but didn't really have the passionate drive to do so. I know that we all have off days (and for such a prolific author, McCall Smith is certainly entitled to more than his share), so I would never give up on the series because of one less-than-stellar read. I do, hope, however, that his next book will prove to be as delightful or more so than those that have gone before. All in all, a mediocre read worth about 3 or 4 stars (I give it four because there definitely are bits of the book that make it worth the somewhat more challenging read.)
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